Reminder: Lake Oswego police chief supported SB 941


by NW Spotlight

Pastor who won AR-15 in raffle: Will Lake Oswego police chief now enforce the anti-gun law he pushed to have pass?

Oregon SB 941 became law in May 2015. This anti-gun legislation, “the Oregon Firearms Safety Act, adds the requirement of a background check for firearm transfers between private parties to existing law.”

Grant County Sheriff Glenn Palmer opposed anti-gun SB 941, and during his testimony back in April 2015 expressed the concern that SB 941 was “going to make criminals out of” “law-abiding citizens who want to pass a gun off to somebody.”

A little over a year later, it now appears Sheriff Palmer was right. Reverend Jeremy Lucas of Lake Oswego may be one of those law-abiding citizens that SB 941 has made a criminal out of.

Rev. Lucas spent $3,000 of church funds to buy tickets for an AR-15 raffle in support of a girls’ softball tournament – with the intent of destroying the AR-15 if he won it. Fair enough. He would be supporting the girls going to their tournament, he would be supporting the gun manufacturer by subsidizing the purchase of one of their rifles, and he would be making a statement of conscience.

The problem came after he won the raffle, passed the background check at a local gun shop and took possession of his AR-15. That’s when it appears he ran afoul of the Oregon Firearms Safety Act.

According to the Washington Post, Rev. Lucas and his wife then “drove it to the home of a parishioner, a ‘responsible gun owner,’ Lucas said, who offered to keep the rifle locked up in a gun safe until the pastor is ready to destroy it.” As the Oregon Firearms Federation pointed out, if the Washington Post story is accurate, then that transfer of the AR-15 by Rev. Lucas to a parishioner broke the law created by SB 941. For that transfer to have been legal, there would have needed to be another background check, through a licensed firearm dealer, while both Rev. Lucas and the parishioner were present.

What Rev. Lucas appears to have done is a Class A misdemeanor (the most serious type of misdemeanor) – which is punishable by a fine up to $6,250 and/or up to 1 year imprisonment.

Rev. Lucas is the pastor at a church in Lake Oswego. If the apparently illegal firearm transfer took place in Lake Oswego, then it presents an opportunity for Lake Oswego Police Chief Don Johnson to enforce a law he pushed to have passed.

Chief Johnson testified before the Oregon Senate Committee on Judiciary back in April 2015 in support of SB 941, and he also spoke in support of SB 941 at a press conference afterwards.

SB 941 - 4-1-2015 hearing_DJ

Lake Oswego Police Chief Don Johnson testifying in support of SB 941

It will be interesting to see if Chief Johnson is the kind of police chief who enforces laws he pushes for.

UPDATE 7/31/2016Portland Tribune: Lake Oswego pastor could face charges in transfer of AR-15

“Lake Oswego Police Chief Don Johnson told The [Lake Oswego] Review on Saturday that after an initial ‘query,’ the LOPD has passed complaints about Lucas to the OSP, which is responsible for deciding whether to conduct an investigation into accusations that the Oregon Firearms Safety Act was violated. ‘I have discussed the matter with the Oregon State Police and am coordinating follow-up with that agency,” Johnson said, adding that “neither the Lake Oswego Police Department nor the Oregon State Police can comment on ongoing queries of this nature.'”

UPDATES 8/1/2016

OPB: Pastor Who Won AR-15 Raffle Could Face Charges

Oregonian: Lake Oswego pastor could face charges for transfer of AR-15

KATU: Oregon State Police investigating hand-off of AR-15 won in raffle

UPDATES 8/2/2016

KOIN/AP: Pastor who won AR-15 may have violated Oregon law

KGW: Pastor who won AR-15 raffle may have violated Oregon law

Fox News/AP: Pastor who won AR-15 raffle may have violated Oregon law

ABC News/AP: Pastor Who Won AR-15 Raffle May Have Violated Oregon Law

Post to Twitter Post to Facebook Post to LinkedIn Post to Reddit

Posted by at 10:00 | Posted in 2nd Amendment, Crime & Sentencing, Gun Control | 19 Comments |Email This Post Email This Post |Print This Post Print This Post
  • Conservatively Speaking

    A rebuke to SB 941 sponsors and rescission of a nonsense law that creates more havoc in a common sense environment. What were legislators thinking, if at all? It certainly won’t mitigate criminal hands from obtaining guns, just further muck up a system protecting 2nd Amendment Rights while a despicable minority criminal element continues to upraise middle finger digits and laughing at knee jerking sponge-blob form of tom foolery.

    • rbdthnfngfnh

      What they were thinking doesn’t matter. Bloomberg paid to get it passed. They took the money and did as they were told.

      • DavidAppell

        Like the NRA isn’t paying to get its preferred legislation passed? Right.

  • Kirkster

    This article seems a bit silly. Police aren’t mindless robots required to enforce the letter of the law in every instance, they have wide discretion in determining whether an offense rises above the trivial. Otherwise, no one would ever be let off with a warning for a minor traffic offense, and anyone jaywalking would be ticketed. If it’s clear that the pastor wasn’t transferring*ownership*, and that the arrangement was temporary, the LO police are certainly not required to make an arrest. My interactions with the Lake Oswego police have all been positive, they’re intelligent and care about the community. They’re also endowed with brains capable of exercising judgement, which the author of this silly piece seems to forget.

    • Ron Glynn

      So Law Enforcement should do the same for me when I break the law to make a political statement. Interesting.

      • Connie Kosuda

        try reading what he wrote.

        • guest

          LO police chief raised a rubber hammer and became a knee jerkier.

    • MrBill

      But the Law is the Law. Silly or not the police have an obligation to enforce it. Because if something did happen, they could be held responsible for not enforcing it.

      This is a good example of unintended consequences.

    • Gardenhomeboy

      The very point of the law is to limit the number of transfers to prohibited persons. It was billed as the universal background check law. This is exactly what it was designed to do. He didn’t know for sure if the person he was transferring the weapon to was prohibited from possessing a gun legally or not. Your need to rationalize this is cute.

    • Gilroygarlic

      The pastor was doing the right thing by placing the gun is a SAFE place so it wouldn’t fall into the wrong hands. There is no way that a criminal justice agency will look at that as a crime or would prosecute.

      • Arele

        Yeah, well, he may very well have been doing the “right” thing, but it’s still the illegal thing. That is why SB 941 was protested so vehemently at the time of its passing. Because the law explicitly made criminals out of law abiding citizens who only wanted to do the right thing.

        Check it out for yourself. It is clear that it was illegal, even if it was to “keep the gun safe”:

    • Arele
    • thevillageidiot

      if that is the case why are they mindlessly enforcing the seat belt law. I have been ticketed for no other reason than no seat belt. is it not my responsibility for my own safety? if that is not mindlessly enforcing a law then perhaps you should educate me. The city did collect additional revenue.

  • DavidAppell

    The gun fetishes of some is killing many Americans. And generally making the whole country look stupid.

    By now this fetish is a cult, with all the irrationality that invades them.

    • IhateLiberals

      Wow! The gay bed wetter chimes in with more anti-gun foolishness. Why do you support more gun controls? Are you simply scared of them like most lefty loons? Or is it because you
      have a past criminal record like many lefties;and can’t legally own one?

      • DavidAppell

        Keep hating. I suspect they are based on the same misunderstands you demonstrate in your comment.

        • IhateLiberals

          Enjoy your wet bed and your homo pals loser.

          • DavidAppell

            Are gay jokes the best you can come up with?

            I expect you are used to being this lame….

  • Marcel

    Why is he doing this? As a handwerker i don´t understand the reason, but it seems to be silly.

Stay Tuned...

Stay up to date with the latest political news and commentary from Oregon Catalyst through daily email updates:

Prefer another subscription option? Subscribe to our RSS Feed, become a fan on Facebook, or follow us on Twitter.

Twitter Facebook

No Thanks (close this box)